Skip to main content


  1. Home
  2. News
  3. News Stories

Christmas fire safety message

10 December 2020

Clare Fire and Rescue Service respond to numerous incidents during the Christmas period every year.

According to Adrian Kelly, Chief Fire Officer, Clare County Fire and Rescue Service, "The main causes of fire during the festive season are candles left unprotected, fairy lights left on all night or improperly wired, Christmas trees falling over, open fires without fireguards and decorations catching fire."

Open fires are used for longer periods during the Christmas period as people spend a lot more time at home. Electrical items and extension leads are used more. Add in flammable decorations, candles and alcohol and it becomes apparent that the risks increase during the festive season.

We wish to remind members of the public to brief themselves with our safety tips to ensure that their holidays are not ruined by fire incidents.

Fire safety tips

  • Check your smoke alarms weekly.
  • Always use a proper candleholder and make sure the candle fits firmly inside it.
  • Leave plenty of space above and around the candle and candleholder.
  • Keep candles away from curtains, Christmas cards and anything that can catch fire.
  • Never leave candles unattended or go to sleep when they are alight.
  • Make sure your Christmas tree has a good base or is attached to the wall.
  • Remember that natural trees dry out and make very good fuel to start a fire.
  • Natural trees should be placed in a suitable stand with water. Cut 50 mm of the bottom of the tree before placing it in the stand.
  • Add water to your Christmas tree stand daily.
  • Keep your Christmas tree at least one metre away from any heat source.
  • Dispose of  your tree properly – never burn a tree in the fireplace.
  • Be careful with any decorations placed near the fireplace.
  • Switch off all Christmas tree lights before going to bed.
  • Check your electric blanket for signs of wear and replace if necessary.
  • Make sure that you put a spark guard around an open fire when it is unattended.
  • Ensure your chimney is cleaned twice a year.

Clare County Fire and Rescue Service wishes everyone a safe Christmas and a Happy New Year.

 Further fire safety information

Page last reviewed: 10/12/20

Back to top